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SOU signs agreement with Ashland K-12 schools

The Ashland university will get basic contact information of the city’s high school students, unless parents opt out

Less than a week after Southern Oregon University announced an agreement with the Medford School District to promote pathways for high school students to enroll in post-secondary education, the Ashland university has done the same with the city’s K-12 schools.

The interlocal agreement signed May 5 allows the basic contact information of Ashland high school students to be made available to SOU, with the exception of families who elect not to release it, according to a news release.

SOU President Rick Bailey praised the agreement between his university and Ashland Public Schools.

“This latest agreement illustrates our ongoing partnership with the Ashland School District, and our shared commitment to the educational needs of all students, including those who may not have family histories of college attendance,” Bailey said in the release. “I am a first-generation college student myself, so I am well aware of how helpful it is to have someone who can point out both opportunities and obstacles.”

Ashland School District Superintendent Samuel Bogdanove commented on the new agreement in the university’s news release, saying the district is “excited” to give its students access to information on local higher education options.

“Students need to know that college is within reach,” Bogdanove said, adding that having a university like SOU in the same city as its public school system is “an exceptional opportunity.”

“When students register for high school, they can elect to participate, or not, in sharing directory information with third parties, including colleges,” Bogdanove said. “By participating, students and their families have the opportunity to learn more about the options available to them.”

SOU stated in the release that more local school district partnerships like the ones the institution signed with Medford and Ashland are anticipated “in the weeks ahead.”